Articles from 08/2009

  • An In Vitro Beef

    Even if meat isn’t murder, that doesn’t mean it’s good for you.

  • Why In-Vitro Meat Is Good for You

    Jason Matheny on the world’s addiction to meat and how to grow ground beef in a test tube.

  • Pluto, David Bowie, and the Flu

    The president's science advisers tackle swine flu's resurgence while Pluto’s defenders mourn its "demotion," and a researcher writes the perfect Bowie song.

  • Here Comes the Sun (and Wind)

    Four experts discuss the balance between pristine land and renewable energy, the pros and cons of photovoltaics versus solar thermal, and how much rooftop solar can help.

  • (Tele)Present at the Future

    Attending a virtual conference—and what it tells us about the future of scientific communication.

  • Because E=mc2

    On the beauty and significance of the world’s most oft-cited but less oft-understood equation.

  • Crash Course in Relativity

    A Seed editor documents, chapter by chapter, her experience reading Why Does E=mc2?

  • Designing Responsible Behavior

    We visit the somewhat chaotic desk of an industrial designer who is leveraging the power of design to convince people to live greener lives.

  • Death and the Rumor Mill

    With healthcare reform on the table, rumors about end of life care were greatly exaggerated. Plus a carnivorous plant is hyped and DNA evidence is faked.

  • The Wagnerian Method

    Physicists investigate the grand artistic vision of one of the most influential artists of the last two centuries.

  • Signal to Noise

    What we’re learning about pancreatic cancer now—and why the cure remains so elusive.

  • The Rorschach Paintings

    In creating her new series, Pareidolia, artist and chemist Vesna Jovanovic detected biomorphic and medical forms in blots of ink.

  • Truth or Lies

    A new study raises the question of whether being honest is a conscious decision at all.

  • Organic Food Isn’t More Nutritious

    An anti-scientific debate in the UK over the nutritional value of organic food, the Pentagon’s power to scare the pants off climate negotiators, and how the Perseids momentarily eclipsed Miley Cyrus.

  • Much Ado About Carbon Offsets

    Five experts debate if carbon offsetting is the quick, efficient way to decarbonize the global economy, or the loophole that will derail such efforts.

  • Milk’s Murky Origins

    Why do only some adults drink milk? The answer is more complicated than you might think.

  • Mapping the Brain’s Highways

    Neuroscientists are mapping out a complete atlas of connectivity in the human brain, but what’s emerging is a battle of scales.

  • Not So Fast

    The NIH aims to map the connectivity of the human brain in five years. But a definitive atlas of the brain will remain out of our grasp for a long time.

  • Hypermusic Prologue

    Physicist Lisa Randall brings her theories of an extradimensional universe to the stage in Hèctor Parra’s opera. Watch and listen.

  • Opera in the Fifth Dimension

    In Hypermusic Prologue, physicist Lisa Randall re-imagines her extradimensional theories of the universe as opera.

  • Counting Green Cars

    While Cash for Clunkers is topped off with an extra $2 billion, science journalists do the math on its environmental impact. Plus, two diseases traced back to their primate origins.

  • Technology in the Trash

    In the Trash Track project, garbage becomes a window through which we are able to see our once invisible and energy-intensive removal chain, prompting us to consider the impact of our waste.

  • A Bloom in Biofuels

    The same organisms that created the oil and gas now powering our industrial society and warming the globe can also be used to make carbon-neutral fuels.

  • Knowing How to Pick a Fight

    Paul Ehrlich believes in provocation and speculation, forcing us to consider: If not for the provocateurs, would we pay attention?

  • Books to Read Now

    August releases on the curious world of microbes, why Einstein’s relativity matters, the intimate history of falling stars, and more.


  • Ideas

    I Tried Almost Everything Else

    John Rinn, snowboarder, skateboarder, and “genomic origamist,” on why we should dumpster-dive in our genomes and the inspiration of a middle-distance runner.

  • Ideas

    Going, Going, Gone

    The second most common element in the universe is increasingly rare on Earth—except, for now, in America.

  • Ideas

    Earth-like Planets Aren’t Rare

    Renowned planetary scientist James Kasting on the odds of finding another Earth-like planet and the power of science fiction.

The Seed Salon

Video: conversations with leading scientists and thinkers on fundamental issues and ideas at the edge of science and culture.

Are We Beyond the Two Cultures?

Video: Seed revisits the questions C.P. Snow raised about science and the humanities 50 years by asking six great thinkers, Where are we now?

Saved by Science

Audio slideshow: Justine Cooper's large-format photographs of the collections behind the walls of the American Museum of Natural History.

The Universe in 2009

In 2009, we are celebrating curiosity and creativity with a dynamic look at the very best ideas that give us reason for optimism.

Revolutionary Minds
The Interpreters

In this installment of Revolutionary Minds, five people who use the new tools of science to educate, illuminate, and engage.

The Seed Design Series

Leading scientists, designers, and architects on ideas like the personal genome, brain visualization, generative architecture, and collective design.

The Seed State of Science

Seed examines the radical changes within science itself by assessing the evolving role of scientists and the shifting dimensions of scientific practice.

A Place for Science

On the trail of the haunts, homes, and posts of knowledge, from the laboratory to the field.


Witness the science. Stunning photographic portfolios from the pages of Seed magazine.

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